hogwarts legacy wizard casts a spell in front of hogwarts

hogwarts legacy review

hogwarts legacy review

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what is it? An open world RPG set in the Harry Potter universe
Expect to pay: $60/£55
release date: February 10, 2023
Developer: avalanche software
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive
commented on: RTX 3060, Ruilong 7 5700G 3.8Ghz, 16GB memory
Association: Official Website(opens in a new tab)

I played over 20 hours in Hogwarts Legacy before I realized it was not only a massive RPG with skill trees, wizard combat, crafting, environmental puzzles and tons of side quests, but also a A quaint home improvement game with zoo management elements. It’s a much bigger game than I think anyone expected, and since I’ve completed the main quest and dozens of side quests in over 50 hours, I’m still amazed at how well each individual element works.

It definitely had a rocky start and distracting technical issues, but once I’m free to explore all of Hogwarts and the surrounding miles of countryside, I’ll enjoy Hogwarts as much as I would play The Witcher 3 or Red Dead Redemption 2 The Watts Legacy: Roaming at my own pace in a convincingly rendered world, allowing myself to disappear into a character I’ve become more and more invested in.

Like those open-world classics I just mentioned, Hogwarts Legacy is a game you’ve probably played before, but it’s also a rare kind of game: a big-budget RPG trying to overshadow a big media All the prestige, splendor and expectation of a property into one seamless sandbox. For the most part, it nailed it. This is Harry Potter’s Arkham Asylum moment — a game that tells its own story in a given world, unfettered by the restrictive deadlines and creative boundaries of a movie tie-in, by a company once relegated to Toy Story. The studio created such mandatory marketing products as 3: The Video Game.

The Hogwarts legacy had a grip on my brain throughout the entire game. When I’m supposed to be preparing dinner, I find myself thinking about killing Dark wizards with Confringo’s explosions, or thinking about what scarf would be best for my favorite coat, which plants I should grow to brew potions of invisibility faster, and Will the game never hitch a ride as I move between Hogwarts’ many towers (it won’t). Unfortunately, I’m also thinking about JK Rowling.

(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

elf bowl

You can’t walk 10 feet without part of Hogwarts Castle.

When the game is good, it’s usually a simple thing to do. We love them, they surprise us, I write about them, it’s fun. But the fun of Hogwarts Legacy forms a unique set of conflicting feelings: I’m enjoying an extended game of JK Rowling, the powerful man who has used their platform to make transphobic comments over the past few years, putting Her wealth and fame have been leveraged to promote an ideology that rejects and further marginalizes one of society’s most vulnerable communities.

Legacy of Hogwarts was not written by JK Rowling, nor was it directly adapted from her story. In fact, Warner Bros. and Portkey Games (the game publishing arm of Harry Potter) even stated that she “was not involved in the creation of the game at all”. Still, it builds on the world she created and inherits some of its problems, notably its portrayal of goblins and “house-elves.” Its success has likely benefited her both culturally and financially.

It will also benefit the talented minds at Avalanche Software, who have built a rich, almost obnoxiously detailed world that often surpasses its source material in quality and inclusion. Hogwarts Legacy is full of simple and harmonious systems that keep things interesting and accessible:

  • Wizard Duel: Unique ranged combat that doesn’t require aiming, but spacing, dodging and countering are key. Think Batman with a cooldown (and more murder).
  • exploration: The world is staggeringly big, and it gets even bigger when you fly anywhere, anytime, anywhere you want.
  • robbery: Your clothing, cloaks, scarves, face coverings, and hats have fate-like offense/defense stats, but you can set your appearance however you want.
  • Collection: Hogwarts has a seemingly endless list of things, often hidden behind a miniature puzzle. Not enticing enough to seek out, but fun to hold onto the path to something bigger.
  • explain: You make a lot, usually with two or three dialogue choices, within a range of expressing the chosen personality (but rarely seem to affect the outcome of the interaction).
  • Room of Requirement: Personalize your wizard’s living space with almost Animal Crossing-level decor options. Eventually, it got bigger.

The most impressive aspect of Hogwarts’ legacy is Hogwarts itself. The developers like to describe their games as “living worlds,” but it’s hard to think of a better way to describe the titular castle.

You can’t walk 10 feet without a part of Hogwarts Castle inactive: books reorganized on shelves, armor suits salute passers-by, hedges trimmed to perfection, ghosts wander around telling jokes, textbooks flutter above passing students, paintings Liven up or talk like MOMA switched to the .gif standard. My favorite corridor at Hogwarts is this unassuming one near the courtyard, where two suits of golden armor give each other a sly kick every time I pass by.used to be the correct armor, in which it has presumably reached here With Lefty’s prank, put on its mace and knock that forever loving crap out of another human being.

This grandeur isn’t always a blessing, though. Avalanche’s dogmatic quest for a realistic Hogwarts makes the place a veritable labyrinth. The central hall alone speaks in half a dozen directions, each spiraling up toward the classroom or down into the dungeon. I’ve never climbed more video game stairs in my life – I’m out of breath just thinking about it. I usually like to disable navigation markers in open world games and learn the map myself, but since I don’t have three years to spare, I’m constantly pressing buttons that summon golden trails to my destination.


As the stakes get higher for the Hogwarts legacy story, it becomes less interested in a comfortable, comfortable school life.

The first few hours of Hogwarts Legacy had me happily immersing myself in student life: attending classes, making close friends, and starting to do harmless teenage pranks like sneaking into the library after get off work. I love how organically learning a new spell fits into these personable cutscenes, and look forward to returning to Potions or Defense Against the Dark Arts each time. It was during these moments that I felt most at home at Hogwarts, but as I progressed, the game became less like a student. I sorely miss seeing “go to class” in my quest log after I’ve mastered all the basic spells.

About halfway through the school year, the gaps in the Hogwarts fantasy become more apparent. Because the world may be responsive to your presence, it’s not particularly interactive – you can grab an apple from a bowl or drink tea in the common room, but you can’t sit in a chair and have dinner in the hall, Or do small talk with students. Ultimately, I felt more like a puzzle museum visitor, and picking out puzzles my way was fun, but not nearly as satisfying as chopping wood or swapping stories in a Red Dead Redemption 2 camp.

As the stakes get higher for the Hogwarts legacy story, it becomes less interested in a comfortable, comfortable school life. Against the backdrop of my first day of wizarding class, a mysterious ancient magic that apparently only I can wield, and a goblin rebellion eventually becomes impossible to ignore. More quests started dragging me to the high ground where everything wanted to kill me even though I really just wanted to be with my kids. In the second half of the story, the student revelry gives way to a brutal wizarding war – the same good friend who snuck into the library with me in the first act of the story ends up getting through many.

(Image credit: Portkey Games)

If the plot of Hogwarts Legacy is starting to sound like its source material, that’s because it’s basically Harry Potter set at 1.75x speed. The similarities go beyond coincidence and are easily distracting: a main character quickly turns out to be a uniquely gifted wizard who gets a lot of special attention and perks from professors who reportedly have hundreds of other students ( Can every student build a base in it? The Room of Requirement, or is it just me?), and possess a unique power that constantly exposes them to real danger from villains. It didn’t help that I insisted on joining Potter’s house, Gryffindor, despite my acceptance to Hufflepuff.

I really wish Avalanche went in a more original direction here, if not to differentiate myself from Harry Potter, then because I’m tired of playing the most important character in a video game. Low-stakes stories are underrated, and like The Witcher 3, some of my favorite moments in Hogwarts Legacy came from strangers I met taking random side quests in the Highlands – for A spurned business partner seeks revenge by robbing plants, seeks out an old lady for a strange statue, or plays detective for a peddler who thinks his sister is stealing from him. I must have checked out dozens of side quests during my playthrough and kept discovering more as I wrapped up the main story. Warner Bros. says there are over 100 side quests out there, and I believe that.

Killing Curse

As Harry and Voldemort square off in their final battle in Death Valley, magical combat looks a bit boring.

The Hogwarts legacy often succumbs under the weight of its meticulous world.

They’re pointing sticks at each other while glaring and grimacing without moving their feet, sort of like a very boring episode of Dragon Ball Z. But thankfully, the Hogwarts legacy manages to keep magic cool. Part of the reason is that instead of going back to the dull, stationary wand fights of the older Harry Potter games, Hogwarts Legacy takes inspiration from the Batman games Warners published.

You, an amazingly capable 15-year-old boy, are constantly taking on half a dozen bad guys at once, dodging danger and juggling enemies with levitation spells. Attacks automatically hit your target, but the challenge is choosing the right spells to exploit enemy weaknesses, managing cooldowns, parrying or dodging attacks, and keeping your distance from enhanced goblins wielding axes.

A lot of the fun goes to the top-notch animation work – the way my wizard combines spells with expressive flicks of the wand, spinning or leaning over attacks to give it something extra charmor deflect magic missiles without looking, which makes every battle more dramatic and interesting than the movie.

(Image credit: Portkey Games)

Hogwarts is a pretty easy game (so much so that I recommend everyone try the hardest difficulty), but I never tire of switching between my dozen or so spells to slice, burn , freeze, explode or convulse to the ground with a curse. That said, the feeling of being on a killing spree outside of campus one minute and in broomstick class the next, never stops.

What’s really annoying is all the repetitive boss fights. There’s a cool troll boss fight at the start of the game that can really improve your dodging skills. Since then, I’ve fought clones of that troll at least eight or nine times in both optional and mandatory quest moments, eventually getting so tired of them that I’ll do my best to stay invisible around them. Virtually all enemies larger than my wizard end up in the trash because they’re too big to hit with the most enjoyable single spell combo in the game – a front flip with a Flipendo followed by a barrage of spells Arrows while they floated helplessly, finally entering the dirt with the Descendo pile driver.

crumbling ground

The Hogwarts legacy often succumbs under the weight of its meticulous world. persistent…

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Bart Thompson
Bart is's List Writer . He is from Houston, Texas, and is currently pursuing a bachelor's degree in creative writing, majoring in non-fiction writing. He likes to play The Elder Scrolls Online and learn everything about The Elder Scrolls series.